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June 08, 2007


Ron Hogan

I take sharp objection to the idea that my blog's coverage of this contretemps constitutes a "fight" with the Rocky Mountain News, Sherman Alexie, Black Cat, or anybody else for that matter. As you say, Shanks dropped us a note about Alexie's outrage over her comments; I found the story interesting, and I commented upon it. I may not have found Alexie's defense 100% convincing, but I'm a skeptic by nature.

There's a broader question, perhaps, of whether a book review is even a place for such outside-the-text ruminations on the nature of the publishing industry and how/why an individual book gets published, but she didn't do anything that you won't find people doing in big city book reviews from time to time, even the NYTBR.


Regardless of whether Patti wants to blame bloggers or not for flaming the fire here (which is not true), the end of the story is that a questionable statement about an author's work was placed in a review and she admits there was no way to verify it - but she ran it anyway.

Alexie and the folks at Black Cat had a right to be ticked off by it - I wouldn't have responded like he did, but the guy gets to be mad at some $50 a review freelancer saying his publisher made a decision that his work wasn't good enough for hardcover. This is the kind of lazy writing (and far worse - lazy editing) that the lit blogopshere gets accused of all the time.

Patti Thorn needs to grow up and take full responsiblity for her screw-ups and not try to deflect it onto the blogosphere.


Once again, the arrogant print establishment draws an us-versus-them line with the blogosphere. Sad.

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